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MA in Urban History

Course Description


This course, designed by leading academics in the field, is an exciting and challenging programme, unique in Britain and abroad. It offers a broad, interdisciplinary introduction to the study of the city from classical antiquity to modern times, enabling students to concentrate on specialist fields including urban archaeology, the history of English towns, Victorian cities, urban topography, the development of town planning, and modern urban problems. The MA uses the unifying theme of the city to explore the social, cultural, political and economic changes brought about by urban growth.

The course will have a strong appeal to historians, archaeologists, local historians, geographers, art historians and all those with an interest in the study of the city and of individual communities.

The MA offers you the opportunity to:
· Study the history of urban society in depth using a multi-disciplinary approach
· Gain training in research methods
· Work with leading researchers in the field of urban history
· Enhance your historical understanding and encourage you to develop your own area of expertise

The skills acquired in research and in presentation are invaluable in many career fields.

One year full-time study or two years part-time.

A minimum of a second class honours degree or its equivalent.

Semester 1:
Students take four common courses including a comprehensive survey of European urbanisation - ‘Ancient to Modern European Urban Historiography’, Economic Theory for Historians; and training in research methods and archival research.

Semester 2:
Students take one common module – ‘Introduction to Social Theory’ and two optional modules which (subject to availability)include:

· Victorian Cities looks at some of the following themes: strategies for survival in the city; social segregation, the role of the town council, neighbourhood and community, culture in the city, architecture and decoration, knowledge and power in the city. It makes use of various on-line data sets and involves field trips and a suburban walk.

· Images and Realities: Urban Topography 1540-1840: This module surveys the changing ways in which towns have been depicted and represented through a variety of media such as maps, engravings, travel literature. The course includes a field trip to Bath.

· Vices and Virtues: Behaving and Misbehaving in British Society: This module looks at changing attitudes towards behaviour between 1880 and 1980. It covers a number of vices and virtues including drinking, smoking, cleanliness and manners. A variety of sources are consulted during the course, in particular oral history and autobiography.

· Planning the City – Domesticating the Urban Environment in Europe 1840-1914 explores the major stages by which urban planning developed to regulate and order urban growth, to domesticate the city as a human environment.

· Colonial Cities in British Asia and Africa 1850-1950 focuses on the economic, political and cultural forces that shaped urban life in colonial cities of.
In focusing on the making of urban modernity in the colonial context, it seeks to draw out the comparative dimension of historical processes and ideas that may have originated in Europe but became truly global in reach and scope during the age of empire.

Modules are complemented by field trips to relevant historic sites.

For Further information on the modules see http://www.le.ac.uk/urbanhist/courses.html

You will also produce a dissertation. This is an important opportunity for students to develop their own research expertise while working on an approved topic under the direction of a supervisor. The dissertation consists of a maximum of 20,000 words.

Teaching at the Centre for Urban History is innovative and high quality and conducted by enthusiastic and experienced staff. Each of the course modules is taught primarily in small group seminars. Assessment for modules varies between options. Some are assessed by coursework alone and others by a mixture of coursework and written ‘open’ examination.

The Centre has again received confirmation of its excellence in research training from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) which means that
students can apply for an ESRC 1+3 studentship.
These awards fees plus maintenance for eligible students to undertake a one-year MA degree followed by a PhD. Students may also apply for studentships from the AHRC which operate on a similar basis.

The Centre for Urban History also offers a part-time MA in Social History and a full-time MA in European Urbanisation which involves a semester abroad in an European University.

More information about the Centre for Urban History, its facilities and resources, the postgraduate environment and the broad range of workshops, seminars, field trips and summer schools can be seen at http://www.le.ac.uk/urbanhist/
For application forms contact Kate Crispin

Visit the MA in Urban History page on the University of Leicester website for more details!

Entry Requirements

2nd; history & related disciplines

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